Truckers Rally to Raise and Deliver Relief Supplies in Wake of Deadly Tornado Outbreak

Lexington, KY — A group of truckers is rallying together to raise and deliver relief supplies for those affected by the deadly tornado outbreak Friday evening that spanned eight states.

According to the Storm Prediction Center, there were “at least” 50 tornadoes reported over the weekend in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, and Tennessee.




 

The most destructive, however, was a rare “quad state tornado,” which ripped a nearly 230-mile path of carnage through northeast Arkansas, southeast Missouri, northwest Tennessee and western Kentucky.

As photos began emerging of the aftermath, the city of Mayfield, KY — which has a population of nearly 10,000 — was shown to be almost completely decimated.

During a press conference on Saturday, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear called the situation the “most devastating tornado event in Kentucky’s history.”

Beshear estimated, at the time, more than 100 lives were lost in the devastation, though admitted the numbers “could rise significantly” in coming days.




 

Upon hearing the news and seeing the photos, James Toller, resident of Georgetown, KY,  former trucker and current truck driving school instructor, knew he had to do something to help his state.

So Toller did what any trucking industry veteran would do: picked up the phone and called some trucking friends, who are always happy to lend a hand to those in need.

“I got the call [from Toller], borrowed a van trailer from MJS Transportation (located in Decatur, IN) and drove down yesterday,” owner-operator Daniel Koors told Transportation Nation Network (TNN) on Sunday.

Koors said he made his way from his home in North Manchester, IN and met Toller at a Walmart in Lexington, KY, where the two men – along with three other trucking industry volunteers — set up shop and began collecting donations for the tornado victims in Mayfield and western Kentucky.

“We are parked here in the middle of [the Walmart] parking lot [with a tractor-trailer],” Koors proudly stated, noting that the team at Walmart has been “so understanding” and “absolutely fantastic.”

 

Now the group is calling on the rest of the trucking industry to help out as they can.

“When it comes to donating items, we need anything and everything,” Koors stated. “Anything you would use on a daily basis that’s not perishable, that’s what we need.”

Koors specifically mentioned water, coats, shoes, clothing, blankets, baby wipes, diapers, feminine products, underwear, socks, deodorant, and non-perishable foods.

“Mayfield has no power, no water, no heat… the water tower in town is gone, Mayfield is a war zone,” Koors somberly explained. “It’s a city of ten-thousand and they have nothing… fire department is gone, courthouse is gone, they’ve got nothing.”

Koors said the best and easiest way to make a physical donation to relief efforts is to order items you wish to donate online at Walmart.com and select the “pickup” option for the Walmart located at 2350 Grey Lag Way in Lexington, KY.

Be certain in your order to specify the pick-up person will be James Toller upon checkout online, and the group outside will receive the items.




 

To those who are willing to give a monetary donation, the group can accept funds through Venmo (@tornadoreleif), CashApp ($brownsfan2022) or Zelle ([email protected]).

One-hundred percent of the funds donated via Venmo, CashApp and Zelle will go towards western Kentucky tornado relief, Koors assured.

To locals and those close to the area, Koors stated there is also a great need for large boxes so volunteers can sort the donated items for delivery.

“Any large empty boxes!” Koors stated. “Amazon boxes, diaper boxes, egg boxes, banana boxes… right now all we have are all these Walmart bags.”

Koors and the group will be at Walmart until it closes on Sunday, then again on Monday until close.

Tuesday morning, Koors said the group will drive the trailer of donations to directly Mayfield.

You can follow the journey and see more photos on “The Disrespected Trucker” Facebook group.

 


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